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Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 1997 Feb;61(2):267-71.

Polysaccharide from Aspalathus linearis with strong anti-HIV activity.

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Institute for Medical Science of Aging, Aichi Medical University, Japan.


Polysaccharide that has been extracted with 1% sodium carbonate from Rooibos leaves (Aspalathus linearis) showed strong anti-HIV activity. Du-Zhong leaves also showed anti-HIV activity, although lower than the extract of Aspalathus linearis, but Japanese tea leaves and a hot water extract of Aspalathus linearis did not. The anti-HIV activity of the alkaline extract from Aspalathus linearis was recovered mainly in the 25-75% ethanol-precipitated fraction. The polysaccharide almost completely inhibited the binding of HIV-1 to MT-4 cells. It is inferred from these results that the polysaccharide from Aspalathus linearis is involved in the mechanism for virus binding to T cells.

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